Taubman Says Quality of REIT’s Assets Key to Growth

Bobby Taubman, chairman, president and CEO of Taubman Centers, Inc. (NYSE: TCO), joined REIT.com for a CEO Spotlight video interview at REITWorld 2015: NAREIT’s Annual Convention for All Things REIT at the Wynn Las Vegas.

The REIT owns, manages and leases regional, super-regional and outlet shopping centers in the United States and Asia. Taubman explained that a major factor behind the company’s continued growth in key operating metrics is the quality of its assets.

“We’re doing over $800 (in sales) per square foot, which is almost $200 per square foot higher than the next-best portfolio that’s out there in the public markets,” Taubman said.

The retail REIT’s strong sales record reflects its ability to attract high-quality merchants, creating a compelling reason for customers to come to the centers, according to Taubman.

Taubman also commented on the REIT’s active share repurchase program.

“It’s no question it’s pretty much a screaming buy right now,” Taubman commented in reference to the current share price. However, before making a share repurchase, the REIT has to weigh the move against using its capital for other objectives, he added.

The company has announced a $450 million share repurchase program and has bought back more than $300 million in company stock through the end of September.  “We obviously believe very much in our company, but it’s been a balanced, thoughtful approach,” Taubman said.